Robert McCammon's The Five

Information  Synopsis  Reviews and Comments 


The Five
By Robert McCammon

Read Robert McCammon's initial posting about The Five.

View the information page at Subterranean Press

Dust jacket and interior illustrations by Vincent Chong.

ISBN: 978-1-59606-341-9

Length: 520 pages


  • Lettered: 26 Deluxe bound hardcovers, housed in a custom traycase
  • Limited: 274 signed numbered copies, in slipcase, including several color plates not in the trade hardcover
  • Trade: Fully cloth bound hardcover edition

A mass-market paperback edition was released by Tor in November 2013. The Five is also available in ebook and audiobook formats.


Robert McCammon, author of the popular Matthew Corbett historical thrillers (Speaks the Nightbird, Mister Slaughter), now gives us something new and completely unexpected: The Five, a contemporary novel as vivid, timely, and compelling as anything he has written to date.

The Five tells the story of an eponymous rock band struggling to survive on the margins of the music business. As they move through the American Southwest on what might be their final tour together, the band members come to the attention of a damaged Iraq war veteran, and their lives are changed forever.

The narrative that follows is a riveting account of violence, terror, and pursuit set against a credible, immensely detailed rock and roll backdrop. It is also a moving meditation on loyalty and friendship, on the nature and importance of families—those we are born into and those we create for ourselves—and on the redemptive power of the creative spirit. Written with wit, elegance, and passionate conviction, The Five lays claim to new imaginative territory, and reaffirms McCammon's position as one of the finest, most unpredictable storytellers of our time.

Reviews and Comments (may contain spoilers!)

New!!  October Country: Review: The Five, 9-JUN-2011:
Read the review at October Country

New!!  cctheprofessor: The Five: "Everything is quiet but the song that keeps me sane", 8-JUN-2011:
Read the review at cctheprofessor

New!!  Gumshoe Review: The Five, 4-MAY-2011:
Read the review at Gumshoe Review

New!!  Bibrary Bookslut: The Five, 2-MAY-2011:
Read the review at Bribrary Bookslut

New!!  A review by Mark Justice from Pod of Horror #64, 12-APR-2011:
Download Pod of Horror #64

"Finally, we have The Five, the new novel from Robert McCammon. Any new McCammon work is noteworthy and a cause for celebration. But The Five is also McCammon's return to contemporary fiction. The Five chronicles the last tour of the titular rock band. As they travel the southwest in a broken down van, their manager and keyboard player announce they're leaving the group. After a surreal encounter with a mysterious young woman, the band decides to write one last song together. At the same time, a troubled veteran becomes convinced that he must kill The Five. Whether he's crazy or under the influence of a vast and dark power is something you'll have to decide for yourself. The possible supernatural element is mostly relegated to the background of The Five. It informs the story without detracting from the rich tale of the traveling musicians and the tragic events that lead to their final show. Ultimately, The Five is about the wellspring of creativity and the enduring power of art, told with incredible skill. McCammon's love for music shines through on every page. I defy anyone to read The Five and not come away feeling changed for the better. If McCammon had not written Boy's Life, I wouldn't hesitate to say this is his best novel ever. It's a book I'm sure I will return to again and again."

New!!  An unsolicited note from Stephen King
The Five isn't just Robert McCammon's best novel in years; it's his best novel ever. Terrifying, suspenseful, unputdownable, and full of rock and roll energy. It's also uplifting, a book you'll finish feeling better about your world, your friends, and your music. Here's one you'll beg friends to read.”

New!!  From Publishers Weekly, March 14, 2011
The Five
Robert McCammon. Subterranean (, $26.95 (520p) ISBN 978-1-59606-341-9

McCammon (Mister Slaughter) delivers a complex, mind-blowing story of a rock band's last days. The Five—rage-filled frontman Nomad, lesbian drummer Berke, retro-inspired keyboardist Terry, self-possessed bassist Mike, and mellow vocalist/guitarist Ariel—are winding down a tour in the Southwest. Both Terry and their manager want out, so this looks to be their last tour. Inspired by a chance meeting with a mysterious woman, they decide to write one final song as a team. What they don't know is that an unstable ex-Marine is stalking them, driven to assassinate them all. After he kills a band member, the remaining four of the Five dodge from gig to gig, pawns in a supernatural struggle far beyond their comprehension. Steeped in rock history, infused with power and passion, and laced with psychological horror and razor-sharp tension, this is not an easy read, but a memorable one. (June)

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